Welcome to the first installment of the Louisiana SPCA’s Ask the Vet Column. At the Louisiana SPCA Community Clinic, we strive to provide quality care and compassion for your pets and to provide you with the knowledge and tools to make the best possible life for your pets. Each week, our vets will answer your veterinary questions to help you keep your furred, feathered, or scaled companions healthy and happy. For our inaugural column, I thought we would start off with a topic dear to our hearts at the Louisiana SPCA: The importance of spaying and neutering.
The calendar may say it’s mid-February, but the temperature outside the last few days feels more like spring than winter. In fact, the mild winter weather is one of the many things I love about this city. Unfortunately for our dogs and cats, particularly the stray population, our predominantly warm weather leads to an extended breeding season and more puppies and kittens being born. Finding a meal isn’t a challenge here either. With our love of good food and restaurants, it’s easy for dogs and cats to dine al fresco on some of the best scraps in the nation. Combine this with an abundance of shelter in the form of raised houses and abandoned buildings and you have the perfect recipe for pet overpopulation. Pet overpopulation is a major problem for our community and one that leaves animal shelters and rescue groups in the metro New Orleans area packed full of animals needing homes. Spaying and neutering prevents these animals from breeding, preventing worsening overpopulation.
Spaying and neutering isn’t just important at the community level. For individual pets, it can provide health and behavior benefits as well. Spaying and neutering can reduce the risk of certain types of cancers, prostatic diseases, and life-threatening uterine infections. “Fixed” animals are less likely to attempt to escape and roam. Unwanted behaviors like marking can also be reduced. For you, the pet owner, there are the benefits of not having the significant cost of caring for unwanted litters or finding homes for all the offspring.
Spaying and neutering are surgical procedures and so, as always, you should discuss the procedure and your individual pet’s health and welfare with your veterinarian. At our Community Clinic, we are happy to discuss this with you as well, and to schedule your pet to be spayed or neutered. Our regular pricing starts at $45 for a companion cat and $75 for a pet dog. We offer a wide variety of discounts and special voucher programs for which you might qualify.
Spay/Neuter is the responsible thing to do for your pet, your home, and your community. You have an exceptional pet, be an exceptional owner and spay/neuter!
Visit www.la-spca.org/clinic for more info on the clinic services offered at the Louisiana SPCA Community Clinic!